Ten Important Factors to Consider When Choosing a Streaming Service by@tomisinolujinmi

Ten Important Factors to Consider When Choosing a Streaming Service

Over 9000 streaming services are vying for your attention and your sweet cash. Netflix is a popular streaming service that appeals to the entire family because of its diversity. Amazon Prime Video has the most videos available of any service while HBO Max has the highest number of “high-quality” movies. Your budget is the major thing to consider when selecting streaming services.
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Tomisin Olujinmi

Breaker of Worlds. Geek of No Nation.


It wasn't that long ago when the most important choice you had to make to watch a movie was where to watch it, either from the convenience of your home or at a local theatre. Now, over 9000 ..


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..similar streaming services are vying for your attention and your sweet cash. And, choosing between them isn't as easy as it used to be unless you decide to fly a particular skull-and-bones flag.


There are certainly people who can pay and opt-in for every single streaming service in existence, from popular options like Netflix to more obscure choices like the Criterion Channel. But, if you're more like me and you'd like to narrow down your options, then this article is for you.


Ten Crucial Factors To Consider When Choosing A Streaming Service


  1. The shows you want to watch


    This is by far the most important question to ask when choosing a streaming service. If you're looking for original content hosted on a specific streaming service, you might have your work cut out for you.


    For example, if you want to watch the Sopranos or the Wire, you should get HBO Max. Netflix is also a strong contender for hit movies and shows. If you want to stream live sports instead, you should consider streaming services such as Peacock Premium or Fubo TV.


  1. Who will be watching?


    If you have children and are looking for a family-friendly streaming service, Disney Plus is a no-brainer. There are also streaming services specifically aimed at children and families such as Pure Flix. Also, most popular streaming options provide parental controls that allow parents to determine what their young children can view.


    If you are choosing a streaming service not only for yourself but for your entire household, you should select a service that caters to everyone’s individual needs. Netflix is a popular streaming service that appeals to the entire family because of its diversity.


  1. Video and Audio Quality


    Video quality and the overall viewing experience are other important factors to consider when choosing a streaming service. A lot of streaming services provide 5.1 and Dolby Atmos surround sound audio technology by default. However, certain streaming services including Netflix charge extra for access to HD and 4K video while networks like Disney Plus and Amazon Prime Video offer the highest quality video on their basic plans.


  1. Price


    Your budget is another thing to consider when selecting streaming services. According to a PCMag Survey, $33 per month is the maximum respondents are willing to spend on average for video streaming services. That's about the combined monthly cost of Netflix and Disney Plus.


    Your budget is likely to vary from this figure, so go with whatever works for you, whether it is more expensive options like Netflix ($15.49 monthly for the standard plan) or cheaper alternatives such as Apple TV+ ($4.99 monthly).


    If you’re looking for the most bang for your buck, Amazon Prime tends to take that position as it offers movies, books, video games, and free shipping all for a single subscription fee.


  1. Overall Available Content


    If you don’t have any particular shows in mind, you might be looking at the total number of shows and movies available to stream on a service. This varies from service to service. According to Reelgood, Amazon Prime Video has the most videos available of any service while HBO Max has the highest number of “high-quality” movies (movies with an IMDb score of 7.5 or more). Discovery+ offers the most tv shows per dollar at 306 shows per dollar, followed by Amazon Prime at $169 shows per dollar.


    As I mentioned earlier, if your primary goal is to make the most of your subscription price, Amazon Prime is likely the best option for you.


  1. Reviews


    User ratings are a great way to see how other users feel about a streaming service, and if there are any problems with the service. User reviews can help you get a sense of what you're paying for before you enter your credit information.


    You should check independent blogs, websites, and forums to examine the pros and cons of the streaming services you are considering in detail. You can also ask your family and friends about their favorite streaming service or what they think about a particular streaming service.


  1. Ease of use and navigation


    The interface and convenience of a streaming service are just as important as the content. Amazing content behind a clunky interface is a no-no for most people. You want to be able to easily find what you want, understand the features and options in your control and be able to use them without exerting too much effort. Mobile accessibility is another major factor to keep in mind.


    The best way to assess these factors is by taking advantage of free trials or discounts that allow you to try out several services at once. This will help you narrow down which streaming option is right for you before committing long-term.


  1. Maximum number of users at a time


    Streaming platforms often limit the total number of users that can use them at the same time. If you're going to be the only one using the service, then this shouldn't be an issue. But if you are going to be sharing with others, the maximum number of people allowed to use a single subscription at a time is something to consider. For example, Netflix's basic plan only allows you to use one device at a time.


  1. Personal flexibility


    It might be necessary for you to switch from one streaming service to another just to watch one show, given the exclusive nature of some streamed shows. How prepared are you to switch streaming services on a whim? You can even rotate between streaming platforms at the start, just to see what works for you. Rotating subscriptions allows you to save money without losing access to any of your favorite shows.

  2. Ads


    Most streaming networks have ad-supported tiers. Whether that defeats the entire point of streaming is another topic for debate. These ad-supported tiers allow these networks to operate without charging higher subscription fees.


    Sometimes, you're better off with ads on a streaming service than without. At the end of the day though, it's up to you to decide whether or not you want to put up with advertisements in exchange for savings and convenience.


We have gone over ten key factors that will help you choose the right streaming service for you, there is one last crucial piece of advice: don’t get overwhelmed by all the choices! You don’t need to subscribe to five different services. Instead, focus on what matters most for your needs—whether that’s price, content types available in each service, or availability on mobile devices like phones or tablets versus televisions only—and then choose accordingly.


What do you consider when choosing a streaming service?


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